Call them mister – South Carolina program aims to boost number of black male teachers at elementary level
Mark Joseph and Barry Tolbert are passionate about becoming elementary school teachers and have learned to ignore the skeptical looks, the discouraging comments about the profession and the fears of low pay.
”Lots of families encourage kids to be doctors and lawyers just to make money,” says Tolbert, 19, of Charleston. ”I think a teacher is the most effective person in America. You don’t hear folks say ‘I look up to my lawyer. My lawyer has done so many things for me.’ But teachers make a difference in lives.”
The young men are in a program developed by Clemson University to address the looming shortage of teachers. This program, though, plans over the next four years to train 240 young black South …